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Establishing a Potty Routine

None of us really remember how we learned to go to the bathroom.  To us, it's simpler than almost any other function we do.  But, when you have a child all of that changes.
Now, most of you probably think that this blog is going to be about potty training your child.  Well, it's not.  Let's face it; there's a lot that needs to be learned about "going potty" even before you get to potty training.  I won't get into the details of going to the bathroom after delivery...I don't want to scare away any blog readers who haven't yet had children.  No, let's talk about going to the bathroom when you have nowhere to put Baby.  The obvious decision is then to retrain yourself in how to go to the bathroom with Baby.

As women, we know how to effectively use public restrooms.  We can hover, squat, and maneuver our bodies into positions so that we never have to touch the toilet seat.  But, you add a child to this equation and things become a little bit more difficult.  Usually, you hope to have someone you know who can hold Baby while you go to the bathroom by yourself.  However, this isn't always a possibility.  You might try to "hold it" until you return to the privacy of your own home so that you can put Baby in his/her crib or somewhere that you trust and know is clean.  But, there will undoubtedly be those times when you must use a public restroom by yourself with Baby. 

Some public restrooms are considerate of their customers who are mothers.  They include the changing table in the handicap stall so that you can secure the younger babies while you use the restroom.  Other restroom designers do not consider this difficulty - most certainly these designers are men.  They either install the changing table so that it opens directly over the toilet or they do not have a stall where you can put Baby somewhere while you do your thing.  This is when we, as mothers, must become creative.

I'm not a person who trusts public restrooms.  While some may appear to be clean, I will never sit my child on the floor - even for the necessity of emptying my bladder.  I'd rather risk embarrassment dancing the "potty dance"!  So, the only other possibility is learning how to properly use the restroom with your child.  Here are my pointers:

1. While Baby is still able to fit into a pumpkin seat, always bring it into the restroom with you.  You can safely put Baby in the seat while you do your thing.

2. Learning to maneuver yourself so that you can potty while holding Baby on your knees is important.  Note: Baby should sit facing away from you for greatest ease.  Baby carriers may be used with smaller children.

3. Teaching Baby not to look under the stall is important.  Singing songs to entertain them is never a bad thing.  It keeps them occupied!  If other restroom users look at you strangely, you will know that they are not or were never mothers.  Don't let them bother you.  They may eventually learn this art.

4. Most importantly, recognize the fact that you are a great mom.  Learning to take care of your own bodily needs while still taking care of your child/children, is an art and a skill that is difficult to develop.  You will face problems at first, but they will be overcome!

So, good luck in your endeavors!  Feel free to leave your potty tips in the comments!

Comments

  1. Great post, Katie! I always appreciate the family restrooms! I find myself holding it as well because sometimes it's just too difficult to maneuver little guy and myself. Not sure about your little one, but mine often gets scared of the flushes from others in the public restrooms. You really would think that stores would be more baby friendly with their restrooms. Also.. not to branch off on another topic but what about places to feed baby??...Ann M. Williams

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